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Adaptation: Investigation 1 - Adaptation of Organisms

In Investigation One, you will investigate the adaptations of different organisms. During this Investigation, you will:

  1. Model three individual cactus plants: one with no spines, one with few spines, and one with many spines.
  2. Investigate variation in the trait of bone density in penguins.
  3. Calculate density using the following formula:


4. Analyze the genetics of bone density by exploring genotypes and phenotypes.

5. Predict possible allele combinations using Punnett Squares.

Adaptation: Investigation 2 -Genetic Variation and Natural Selection

In Investigation Two, you will investigate genetic variation and natural selection. During this Investigation, you will:

  1. Investigate the effect of bone density on the ability of the penguins to catch fish.
  2. Explore genotypes and phenotypes of bone density.
  3. Calculate the frequency of alleles using the following formula:

4. Investigate how surviving penguins pass on their trait for bone density to their offspring.


Adaptation: Investigation 3 - Natural Selection

In Investigation Three, you will investigate natural selection. During this Investigation, you will:

  1. Model the existence of penguins in a world with increasingly colder environments.
  2. Identify the genotypes and phenotypes of penguins with dense bones and less dense bones.
  3. Represent the mortality and survival of penguins of differing bone densities in a model ocean.
  4. Analyze the alleles of the offspring from surviving penguins and repeat the representation of the mortality and survival of these offspring in a model ocean.
  5. Analyze the fossil record of past penguin populations that occurred near Antarctica.

Adaptation: Investigation 4 - Performance Assessment

This Performance Assessment is designed to allow students to solve a problem using the:

  • concepts with which they have become familiar during the previous three Investigations, and
  • procedures used during the previous three Investigations.


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